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The automated response came about thirty seconds later.
“This emergency response line is intended for reporting crimes or unusual activity observed at amtrak stations. Please do not use this number for any other requests.”
He smiled. There was someone on the other side of that pre-written message whose day had just been made.
“I love you too honey…”
The rocks on the coastline have a shorter memory than their siblings further inland. The waves make sure of that; the ceaseless crashing wears away even the sharpest of marks. Sooner or later every coastline rock is worn into pebbles, into sand, into dust floating in the waves. There is a phrase that floats around; “if you love something, let it kill you.” I don’t know that I agree with that; I’m too selfish, I want to stay around with the things I love. I wouldn’t mind being dust in a wave, though. That seems like a perfect death.
First, you must disconnect yourself from the outside world. There must be no distractions. Then, gather the ocean in your hands and pick out the salt by hand. Build crystals with the salt, make elaborate sculptures and complex patterns. The sandwich itself is uncomplicated; wheat, woven into bread, surrounding slices of turkey and spears of pickle. Mortar this together with pesto and ground chickpeas, wrapped in fresh spinach. Finally, sprinkle in a dash of the ocean. Return to the world, with your prize.
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Sometimes, when I get really low, I imagine that I can feel the metal of a gun braced against my teeth. The barrel is a little to large to fit into my mouth comfortably; I gag a little at trying to hold my jaw so wide open. It seems wrong that the metal is so cool, when in just an instant it could be so hot so quickly. I wonder if it would really heat up all at once, or if it would take more than my one shot to get it warm. I’ve never really handled guns, just my uncles hunting rifle loaded with light rounds so a child could handle the recoil, and my brothers plastic airsoft pistol. I worry, that the mouth isn’t the right way to do this; I pull it out and press it under my chin instead. Would this be faster? is there something else I can do, to make sure that as soon as I pull this trigger, I don’t remember anything else? I can hear my housemate moving in the next room. I wonder what he’d do when he heard the sound, if I could mute it by firing through a pillow or something, but he’d probably still be the one to find the body. I press the gun to my cheek, feel the cold metal, the texture of it against my skin. I like textures. I push the safety back into position with my chin, feeling it catch slightly on the stubble of a few days without shaving. I notice how hungry I am; I wander downstairs, to see what I can make for dinner.
When you live this high up, dropouts are a bit overdramatic. the fall only takes 1.87 seconds, but it’s loud, and it’s violent. 1 mississippi, 2 mississip-
You’ve ruined any chance of everyone else studying for the week. It’s not that we don’t understand; we’ve all thought about it at some point this week. We just wish you could have waited.
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not crazy sane enough. You don’t have to worry until you hear voices you don’t have to worry until you argue with the voices you don’t have to worry until the voices win. They’re laughing at me; am I funny? I like being funny. Laughing is contagious it is advantageous ha ha hahaha hahahahahaha AHAHAHAHAHAHAha nevermind. Please say something, because you’re being to loud and it hurts my their ears. If you don’t speak the voices will win, they always win if you don’t answer them, and you have to answer loud so they can hear youSHUTUPALREADYIGETITYOUWIN, and then they go away for a while. I like music. I can’t hear them over the music. I can hear you though, I can hear you staring at me. You’re afraid of me afraid for me very, very, afraid. And you don’t know why, because you haven’t noticed it yet, and I haven’t given enough hints. I’ll tell you why you’re afraid. You’re not looking at a window or a painting, or a paragraph, you’re looking at a mirror. You’re not crazy sane enough though. Everyone has a mirror like this.
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We don’t have forever.
Some days it feels like we might, some days the hours stretch on and on and we wish we could see an end, but when an end actually comes we’re never really ready for it. We don’t have forever, and we need to keep an eye on that fact, because if we don’t we might start running to the end instead of dancing to it.
Show the world we want a phone worth keeping! #phonebloks
I would like everyone to know that the teachers in the English Dept at Alamogordo HS do not agree with the knee jerk reaction of pulling Neverwhere from the Dept. library. It has been successful as a supplemental novel and since our goal is to get students engaged and encourage their thinking, this novel is a keeper — the students love it. The passage the parent is referring to is not graphic, but it is an adult type situation…a very briefly visited one.
I am sorry our school administrators did not stand up and support the material the way we all would have expected them to do. Also, as much as we hate to expose anyone for not speaking the truth, this parent had publicly stated that the school was “forcing” her student to read the novel (not true), and she also stated that the school never offered her daughter an alternate selection when she objected to Neverwhere. This statement is one that we will vehemently deny. The mother is stating inaccurate comments publicly. I work with the teacher in question – a very capable and intelligent young woman that is an asset to the English Dept.- and she immediately provided an alternate novel to the student as soon as the mother made the first known objection to Gaiman’s novel.
We simply cannot stand for banning a book for hundreds of students this year and in the years to come because a single parent objected over one brief passage on ONE page. Making inaccurate comments about the teacher (whom the parent chose not to even meet, but publicly disrespected her and questioned her credentials in spite of that), saying we forced anyone to read a text she objected to, or stating that no alternative assignment was offered is absolutely false. Teachers are sensitive to the needs of their students.
Our students have enjoyed Gaiman’s novel for almost ten years, and it saddens us to think that our future students will not have the same opportunity.
The teachers in the English Dept are opposed to any form of censorship. This situation is being handled incorrectly, it makes our school and our town appear as if we are fine with suspending the use of a book that is used by middle and high schools across the country and around the globe. We are not fine with it, and we want people to know that.
Kathy Wallis commenting in School Library Journal on the banning of NEVERWHERE at Alamogordo High School, New Mexico.
The original article reported from the parent’s point of view has gotten nationwide play, can we boost the signal on this as well please?
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So one of my best friends both took this picture and wrote the piece below. she doesn’t write very often, and was hoping that other people could help her critique it a little.
almost forgot, her stuff comes from here; http://throughthehowlingwilderness.tumblr.com/
Six impossibly full days live in our collective mind, evoked with one word. Wrapped in blankets, standing on the deck in the morning. Watching the tide rise and fall, the run set but never rise because sleep was too enticing. Magic, inexplicable places, that can never be recreated just as they were. When we return, they will still hold magic, but of a yet unimagined kind. The Island of Candy and Seals. Kayaking into the dark or the mist. The strange and unlikely cohesion of the six of us, genuinely enjoying one another’s company. The air as we made the last hour of the six hour drive, somehow richer and fuller and more as it blasted us through the open windows. Every place we desired to go unfolding before us as though it existed only for us, disappearing like a dream as soon as we woke up. Rolling over hills and valleys. It’s a well known fact that cramming more than five people into a car and all screaming the same song at once is a recipe for pure and absolute joy. Do this as many times as possible. Make sure you laugh until past the point where you cannot draw breath. Share a bottle of whiskey and get spectacularly, sublimely drunk. Wade into the ocean, but bring your best friend. Get stuck in the mud, they’ll help you get out. This rule applies to all things. Try to take pictures. Accept that nothing two dimensional, nothing in the physical world can record how you feel. Try anyway.
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purgatory used to be an eden. the air has lost it’s glow over time, and the trees lost their leaves (even the evergreens). The birds and the bees and the snakes and Eve would all sing together, and the forest would resound with their voices. The stones used to be warm all through the night, and the water was cool all day long, but nobody has the time to maintain that sort of thing anymore. even so, if you listen close you can still hear Eve singing. it takes a while for echoes to die.
Photo from http://kafik.deviantart.com/
Minnows don’t move far, but they move a lot. If you extend your arm like a wing over the water, they will dart from it, generations of experience forcing them into action, but even then they get maybe a foot and go back to their brownian motion. What are they looking for? What did they lose at the bottom of the river that’s so important that they don’t explore the vast depths, the wonderful freedom of moving in three dimensions? Don’t they know how much else is there?
When the sun goes out they can’t see the shadows of wings dropping towards them. They’ll die in the shade, but they won’t be worrying about the shadows of my arms anymore.
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Haven’t you ever wanted to bottle the sky? To take that beautiful blue and gather it in your own two hands, to feel how soft, how light the earth’s blanket is? How could I resist holding a color? I make no apologies. I didn’t know we needed atmosphere.
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